All IB students know the joke that they get no free time at all. Actually I’m not sure that’s a joke. Anyway, the point is everyone needs a break to rest, sleep and be healthy. Getting a balance is really important if you want to be able to get those precious IB points for university. But how can you get the perfect study-chill balance?
We’ve put together 3 things to remember each day and each week when planning your free time in the IB.
Planning your day: Three things to remember
No, this isn’t advice from your grandmother, it’s advice from your psychiatrist. Lack of sleep actually causes cognitive impairment equivalent to that of intoxication by alcohol. Yep, you read that right – don’t sleep enough and it’s like going to school after stealing your dad’s Jack Daniels. Not sensible. Sleep for better grades!
Remember the ‘principle of diminishing returns’
IB students need to work a lot, it’s true. But after about 25 minutes your attention starts to fade. After about an hour you will really be struggling. After two hours without a break you aren’t really learning at all. So go take a break and remember that sitting in front of your laptop for hours and hours won’t get you a better grade.
Know yourself – use time wisely.
We only get so many hours in each day. Make sure you use your time wisely by thinking about when you have minutes available. For example you might know that you have a free hour during school – so plan to do some work then. You might also know that your friends always call you on Friday nights to go out…so don’t plan to work then! If you’re tired then don’t try to do work that is too stressful. This tip is all about knowing yourself and thinking ahead.
Planning your week: Three things to remember
Protect your time
The number 1 reason why students feel overwhelmed by work is that they fail to protect time – so protect yours! This works by choosing a time (or times) that you will never do work in. Maybe Sunday afternoon and evening. Then you focus on getting your work done by Midday sunday because you know that you never work in your protected time. This means that if Monday’s homework isn’t done by noon on Sunday…it isn’t getting done! (Unless you do it Monday morning). Protecting your time will free you from that horrible I know I should be working but I need a break experience.
Ok I don’t mean you have to be the next Arnie but getting out of the house and going for a walk (or a run) will help you keep your energy levels up. It will make you more focussed and feel really productive. So put s time in your daily schedule for working out…YOU CAN DO EEET!
The Weekly Treat
This one is essential, because the IB is tough. When something is tough we need to motivate ourselves to keep going. For this reason you should plan a weekly treat for yourself. Just playing Mortal Kombat for 5 hours in a row doesn’t count. This could be something like going to a party, or paint balling or even just meeting a friend for a hike. The point is you can’t just sit in all day thinking about your lack of CAS hours. Make sure you get out into the world and have fun…at least once per week!
That’s it! Follow these 6 tips and your productivity will increase, your happiness will grow and future-you will be grateful when she or he gets to the college they wanted!